21 March, 2010

We're still waiting...

It's hard to believe a category 3 cyclone crossed the cost just a few hundred km from here. Lots of trees down and some houses had their roofing torn off by the wind and very heavy rain but nothing up this way. It was very quiet overnight- we kept waking up and thinking- "Well, the wind should pick up any minute now." And it never really did.

I got up around 5:45 and there wasn't a breath of wind. There have been a few gusts but nothing over about 40km/hr.

Anyhow, Ului is now just a rain depression heading into the interior of the state bringing some heavy rains with it. Maybe that's it for this cyclone season- here's hoping.

Cheers- ride safe

20 March, 2010

Gettin' ready for a big blow.......

Well we're hunkered down at 7:00pm while the dinner stews on the stove- and that's only appropriate since it is stew- waiting the arrival of Ului. Ului has been bouncing around the South Pacific and Coral Sea since last Sunday and has decided it's time to "put into port" on the oceanic ventures.

This tempest has probably generated more column inches (or bandwidth) than any storm in recent times. As early as Monday there were predictions that Ului would come ashore and wreak havoc on the east coast of Queensland. Those predictions came primarily from the US Navy's meteorologic service in Pearl Harbour with early predictions of landfall in the southern part of the state.

A local weather presenter took exception to some of the media coverage and vented his spleen over "sensationalist" media coverage and that there was no threat as the system was going to head to the south-east and not be of any consequence- according to the national weather agency (as reported by said weather presenter).

Let's move ahead to today and as we sit here (in a very eerie stillness) we are sitting in a region that has been pre-declared a disaster area- giving authorities the power of forced evacuations.

Will there be any humble pie consumed? I suspect not- but this "non-threatening" weather event may seriously impact my opportunity to get in a Sunday ride.

Cheers- ride safe (and avoid the cyclones)

07 March, 2010

Flora and fauna

Well the team time trial has been and gone..........we rode quite well but actually did quite poorly overall. We had nominated a time of just over 44 minutes for 20 km. Now that may seem a bit slow but a couple of our team haven't been riding much and were pretty sure they wouldn't be able to maintain much more than 27 or 28 km/hr. Fair enough we say and remove all of our bike computers, watches, GPS, sundials and calendars before the race.
Given that the whole idea was to ride to our nominated time- we failed spectacularly. We were faster by almost 4 and a half minutes which is comforting in the "so you rode pretty well" stakes but absolute SML (Stone Motherless Last) in the "ride to your chosen time" category.
The friends we rode with have been focusing on other health and fitness activities of late and have only ridden about 3 times in the last three weeks. Those rides also tend to be more of a social occasion than a training ride and a real gabfest often takes place and gets interrupted by cycling.
Anyway it was all good fun and the greenery along the road is as lush as I have ever seen it- I guess a couple of months of good steady rain will do that. Lots of birdlife around the wetlands and a few "Joe Blakes" on the road. (For anyone unfamiliar with Aussie rhyming slang- a Joe Blake is a snake). They were of all of the deceased status and looked like they were probably young water pythons.
Looks like it'll be blue skies and sunshine for a few days now- no excuse not to get some good km's in this week.

Cheers- ride safe

05 March, 2010

It's time!!!!

As Arsenio Hall used to say as the intro to his show, "Its time....." time I got stuck back into scrawling off a line or ten. What a slacker, eh?? I would like to use Vancouver 2010 as an excuse but that wouldn't be right. I would say my total TV hours for the Olympics would have been less than 10 hours- somehow I just couldn't stay up to watch the nightly broadcasts starting at 9:30. And on a couple of occasions on the weekends when we managed to grab some time in front of the box, we were treated to repeats of Torville and Dean. For crying out loud folks- can we move on? There have been other skaters on the ice since 1984...

We relied on free to air telecasts having gotten rid of our satellite dish some years ago- and like a lot of things these days, it's free for a reason..... I do have it from a good source that the Fox Sports package was excellent so if there is no option for streaming over the net for the next Olympics, that may be an option. As it was, the event I wanted to see the most, the gold medal men's hockey game was on tape-delay here so I headed off to work and found a live blogging of the game. Not quite the same and the refresh button on the browser got a pretty good workout.

And so what has all of this got to do with cycling? Well not much, it's just that even with all of the heavy rain we had during the Olympics which severely reduced my hours on the bike, I still couldn't bring myself to watch the free to air coverage.

Team time trial on Sunday- a club fun one. Mixed grades and genders in teams of three or four- nominate your time and try to ride to it with no watches or bike computers.....prize for the team that comes closest to their nominated time.

Cheers- ride safe